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05-22-2011, 11:37 AM   #1
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Decent A4 printer?

Hi all,

I would love to get new printer. Nothing fancy but nothing lousy either. A4 as size would be OK, good picture quality, and good "office" output. Not too expensive to run and not too expensive to start with. You get me, right? Kind of DA35/2.4 AL bang for buck level

Thanks for any suggestions,
Regards

P

05-22-2011, 01:10 PM   #2
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Almost any current ink jet printer. The photo output from combination printer/scanners is quite acceptable, i.e. EPSON Stylus CX8400 Series, plus there is the useful scanner. Nest step up is a real photo printer such as EPSON Stylus Photo 1400 Series, excellent bang for $$$, ability to produce professional output at A3 size.

Benefits of those printers is they use separate ink cartridges for each color -- replace only the color that runs dry, instead of an partially empty multi-color cartridge, ink is expensive! -- and, ability to print using only black ink, to save color inks.
05-22-2011, 01:24 PM   #3
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I have been using the basic Brother MFC-465CN with safisfaction. Scans and prints are great. Network setting works, but the best part is the ink cartridges aren't chipped so I can use refills w/o problem. It self-cleans even when switched off so long as the AC cord is hooked so that the nozzles never clog. Photo printing will require profiling for accurate colour though, and it takes 220gsm or lighter photo papers only. AFAIK, all their MFC inkjets share the same chassis so they are basically the same with different features.
05-22-2011, 02:44 PM   #4
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I bought a Canon Pixma iP4820 several weeks ago and have been very pleased with its performance. The initial price was quite reasonable, but ink is relatively expensive. My only complaint to date is that the Canon inks show considerable metamerism under tungsten as opposed to daylight illumination. My toned B&W photos all have a magenta cast when viewed under tungsten lamps. The cast totally goes away when viewed in daylight.


Steve

P.S. The Epson 1400 or Canon iP6520 would have been my next pick if I were looking to spend that kind of money to support larger paper.

P.P.S. Dang! I just noticed that the Canon Pro9000 Mark II has a $200 rebate right now. That is a heck of a printer for just under $250 USD. (Must contain lust for nicer stuff...)


Last edited by stevebrot; 05-22-2011 at 02:55 PM.
05-23-2011, 12:43 AM   #5
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I second the Canon printers. I have an all-in-one that produces surprisingly good prints (I used Ilford Galerie Smooth Pearl paper), and each ink is in it's own separate cartridge. It was discontinued when I got it a year or so ago so was 80 at Tescos - a great buy - it has an ethernet port which is how I connect to it. I have used both Canon inks and 3rd party ones with no problems.

Places like 7dayshop.com are good for inks - if the parcel is under something like 18 in value there isn't any VAT to pay, and so far as possible that's how they parcel up an order.

pcpro.co.uk have a lot of printer reviews.

Maybe you need to decide on the features you do need. Wifi connection? (the work of the devil IMHO!) Ethernet? All-in-one or straight printer? How many prints? Colour or B&W? Producing good neutral B&W prints is often the most difficult bit of printing.
05-23-2011, 08:22 AM   #6
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The problem lies in your 'not too expensive to run/not too expensive to start with' requirement. You can have one but not the other, unfortunately. All small printers use small cartridges (usually 11-13ml) which run out virtually within seconds of being installed in the machine and cost, ml for ml, a fortune compared to ink for more expensive machines with larger, more economical tanks. If you have the space, a more expensive machine can actually end up cheaper in real terms thanks to the value of the ink in its starter tanks.
05-23-2011, 02:42 PM   #7
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I have been very happy with my Canon iP4700, I think the newest is iP4850. The B&W output is decent but not perfect, but the color output is great. I use Canon Pro II paper.
05-24-2011, 03:53 AM   #8
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I have used an Epson T50 for a couple of years now. The machine cost $150, the inks (6 cartridges) $120. It does nice color, matte or glossy and B&W. I don't know how economical it is. I don't care. I only print when I think I've got something I really like.If I had shots good enough to frame I get it done at a lab.

05-24-2011, 06:28 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by artobest Quote
The problem lies in your 'not too expensive to run/not too expensive to start with' requirement. You can have one but not the other, unfortunately. All small printers use small cartridges (usually 11-13ml) which run out virtually within seconds of being installed in the machine and cost, ml for ml, a fortune compared to ink for more expensive machines with larger, more economical tanks. If you have the space, a more expensive machine can actually end up cheaper in real terms thanks to the value of the ink in its starter tanks.
Completely agree. Inkjet ink is said to be the most expensive liquid in the world, so you'd be wise to do your homework on the cost of replacing cartridges for whatever printer you're interested in. As others have said, most printers these days will do a decent job. It sounds like you're looking for a good all-rounder and there are plenty to choose from, but do check the price of their carts.
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